For Americans Social Security Disability benefits can become an important source of financial support as your disease progresses. I am going to be writing a number of posts that will explain the benefits that are available and how to apply for them.

First order of business is to understand how the Social Security Administration defines disability. Social Security Disability benefits are only available if you are totally disabled. No benefits are paid for partial or for short term disability.

You will be considered disabled only if you can not perform the work that you did before becoming disabled and if the administration determines that your work can not be adjusted to allow you to continue working. Your disability must be expected to last at least one year or to result in your death.

This is very strictly interpreted. When you apply for benefits the government will carefully check that your disability fits the definition. when you apply for benefits they will confirm the information you provide on your application with your doctors and your employer to insure that you meet the all the criteria.

Joel T Nowak MA, MSW